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Carriere aiming for France World Cup squad

© Reuters 2002

PARIS, Jan 29 (Reuters) - Olympique Lyon's Eric Carriere wants to be in the France squad for the World Cup, but says there are so many top players in the country that he would not be ashamed if he did not make the grade.

"I really want to prove I am good enough to be one of the 23," Carriere told French magazine France Football. "I am working on it but if I fail then never mind. I am well aware of the quality of the players," the midfielder added.

"I would not join the French team to replace Zidane. But there are so many big players in France that I told myself it would be no shame if I ended up being 24th."

Carriere said France face a tough challenge if they want to repeat their 1998 World Cup victory, pointing out that his former club Nantes were 2001 French division champions but are this year mired near the bottom of the table. "When you see the problems that a champion club can have repeating their success you can imagine how that could happen at an international level," Carriere said.

"But Les Bleus proved they could keep it up at Euro (2000)... Only Deschamps and Blanc are off the team, which means the potential is still there."

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